© John Vink / Magnum Photos

 

The communities from Borei Keila and Boeung Kak lake, together with their guests from Lorpeang (Banteay Meanchey), held yet another demonstration in front of three venues: the World Bank, the European Union and finally the National Assembly.

The pertinence of their dissatisfaction cannot be questioned: they, like so many, thousands, involved in land issues in Cambodia, are victims of an unjust situation. The energy they deploy to, time after time, hit the road and protest in front of this or that institution or office, cannot be questioned either: they come up with new props, with a better organisation, have a better understanding on how to convince the security forces to let them do their thing, on how to get some journalists to still report on their activities. What one can question is the efficiency of it all… It has been so many years now that they have held demonstrations. To what effect? Shouldn’t they have had a clear victory or a demobilising defeat? They did not obtain everything they wanted. Just some of it and would have obtained nothing if they hadn’t tried.

But what is at stake here is that they have become a reference as to what is possible in terms of protest, as to how far one can resist the erosion of human rights in a tightly controlled country whose citizens are, like in most countries, preoccupied in staying below the radar while making a decent living.

Let’s not fool ourselves. Of course Boeung Kak lake can still protest because right now the authorities tolerate it: it polishes their image after the layer of murky varnish they collected early January. But the strength of Boeung Kak lake and all those who protest forced the authorities to reveal that tolerance. That gain is worth even more than a few hectares.

(Update: edited a few words…)

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: Song Srey Leap, land rights activist, prepares the bull horn for the usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila) planning a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: Song Srey Leap, land rights activist, prepares the bull horn for the usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila) planning a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 18/09/2014: The usual communities, (Boeung Kak lake and their guests from Lorpeang, Borei Keila), held a demonstration in front of the World Bank, the European Union and the National Assembly.

Some 8 unions, representing part of the 600,000 Cambodian factory workers, staged a demonstration to pressure the buying companies (Zara, Levi’s, H&M, Adidas, LVMH etc…) and the owners of the factories into obtaining a monthly wage of 177$US instead of the current 100$US. The event receives worldwide support from many unions in various countries.

This is a follow-up on the ebook ‘A Fine Thread’ which is available for your iPad or your Mac running ‘Mavericks’. Written by Robert Carmichael and with photographs by myself, the ebook gives a comprehensive overview of the current situation of Cambodian factory workers and the garment sector. The ebook is sold for 4.99$US and can be bought at the iTunes Store at THIS LINK.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Union leaders distributing stickers demanding a 177$US monthly wage to workers during lunch break near the Canadia Industrial Park.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Union leaders distributing stickers demanding a 177$US monthly wage to workers during lunch break near the Canadia Industrial Park.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Ath Thon, president of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers' Democratic Union (C.CAWDU), addresses workers inside Canadia Industrial Park when they hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Ath Thon, president of the Coalition of Cambodian Apparel Workers' Democratic Union (C.CAWDU), addresses workers inside Canadia Industrial Park when they hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Soldiers keep an eye on workers inside Canadia Industrial Park holding a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Soldiers keep an eye on workers inside Canadia Industrial Park holding a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park watch co-workers hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers inside Canadia Industrial Park watch co-workers hold a demonstration to demand a monthly wage of 177$US (instead of the current 100$US).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers in front of the Sun Well Shoes Co, Ltd. demonstrate for a 177$US monthly wage.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Workers in front of the Sun Well Shoes Co, Ltd. demonstrate for a 177$US monthly wage.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Worker in front of the Sun Well Shoes Co, Ltd. applied a sticker at the entrance of the factory during a demonstration for a 177$US monthly wage.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Worker in front of the Sun Well Shoes Co, Ltd. applied a sticker at the entrance of the factory during a demonstration for a 177$US monthly wage.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Veng Sreng street, which was the location of a violent crackdown by the army of a workers' strike. At least 5 people were killed by live fire.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 17/09/2014: Veng Sreng street, which was the location of a violent crackdown by the army of a workers' strike. At least 5 people were killed by live fire.

The intimidating presence of a considerable numbers of riot police deployed at Wat Samaky Raingsey and near the Stung Meanchey bridge, thwarted the plan to have 100 buddhist monks and environment activists demonstrate at the Chinese embassy against the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam.

Just 1 tuktuk with 4 Borei Keila land rights activists and 3 monks managed to stay a few minutes before the embassy before being pushed away by the police.

Moments later another group of monks, joined by villagers from Kampong Speu province, gathered at Freedom Park.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community and a few buddhist monks tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam and were pushed away by the police. The protest was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community and a few buddhist monks tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam and were pushed away by the police. The protest was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Important police forces posted at the gates of Wat Samaky Raingsey and at the Stung Meanchey bridge prevented buddhist monks from attending a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Important police forces posted at the gates of Wat Samaky Raingsey and at the Stung Meanchey bridge prevented buddhist monks from attending a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam. It was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam. It was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community and a few buddhist monks tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam and were pushed away by the police. The protest was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: A tuktuk with 4 land rights activists from the evicted Borei Keila community and a few buddhist monks tried to join a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam and were pushed away by the police. The protest was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists and was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Ly Channin, activist monk, addresses journalists at Freedom Park after a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam who was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Ly Channin, activist monk, addresses journalists at Freedom Park after a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam who was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Activist monk meditates at Freedom Park after a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam who was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists was thwarted by the police.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 13/09/2014: Activist monk meditates at Freedom Park after a demonstration in front of the Chinese embassy to protest the construction of the Areng valley hydropower dam who was supposed to be attended by 100 buddhist monks and environment activists was thwarted by the police.

Both the evicted communities from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) and Malai (Banteay Meanchey), hosted and supported by land rights activists and buddhist monks in two different locations, marched through the streets of Phnom Penh to deliver petitions at the Ministry of Justice and the National Assembly for the first and at the National Assembly only for the second group.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, on their way for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted villagers from Lorpeang (Kampong Chhnang) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, on their way for a demonstration at the Ministry of Justice to request the liberation of their jailed members.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 12/09/2014: Evicted from Malai (Banteay Meanchey), mostly handicapped former Khmer Rouge soldiers, hosted by activist monks at Wat Stung Meanchey, are protesting in front of the National Assembly.

The Stung Meanchey pagoda, well at least some of the monks at that pagoda, together with monks from Wat Than, are involved in supporting those who are suffering from unjust situations. They were present during the SL factory worker’s strike at the end of 2013, they did show up frequently during the post-election rallies from the opposition CNRP. Today they host 67 families at the pagoda, mostly former soldiers, many of them maimed by land mines, from Malai in Banteay Meanchey, who are involved in a land issue.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monk, in front of a poster representing self-immolating monks from Vietnam and Tibet, addresses the journalists during a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monk, in front of a poster representing self-immolating monks from Vietnam and Tibet, addresses the journalists during a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Monks from Wat Than organise a press conference at Wat Stung Meanchey for 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Child selling joss sticks to people visiting the pagoda during Pchum Ben. The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 11/09/2014: Child selling joss sticks to people visiting the pagoda during Pchum Ben. The monks from Wat Stung Meanchey, against the will of the chief monk, host 67 families, mostly former soldiers with many being handicapped, involved in a land issue in Malai (Banteay Meanchey).

This is part of a new story called ‘Hearths of Resistance’, which itself is a follow-up on the ‘Quest for Land‘ story which is available as an iApp on iTunes and which reports on land issues in Cambodia since the year 2000 with texts by Robert Carmichael and over 700 photographs.

The villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province), evicted by KDC International Company, headed by Chea Kheng, the wife of Minister of Industry, Mines and Energy Suy Sem, and who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, held an unhindered ‘press conference’ at Freedom Park.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, prepare to stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 10/09/2014: The evicted villagers from Lor Peang (Kampong Chhnang province) who are hosted by the Boeung Kak lake land rights activists, stage a protest at Freedom Park to request the liberation of their arrested members.

Two groups of evicted communities joined hands to demonstrate in front of the National Assembly this morning to protest, pointing their fingers to Kep Chuktema, former governor of Phnom Penh, who they are holding responsible for the mess they are in.

One group was forcefully diverted by the police in its march towards the National Assembly when trying to pass in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen’s house.

If the anger the evicted communities in Phnom Penh feel towards the authorities and in particular towards Kep Chuktema is understandable after all they have been going through over the past years, the idea to compare the governor to Kaing Guek Eav, alias ‘Duch’, the convicted head of the infamous S21 Khmer Rouge interrogation centre is rather unreasonable.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Protesters holding poster comparing Kep Chuktema, former governor of Phnom Penh, to Duch, the convicted head of the infamous S21 Khmer Rouge interrogation center, when evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Protesters holding poster comparing Kep Chuktema, former governor of Phnom Penh, to Duch, the convicted head of the infamous S21 Khmer Rouge interrogation center, when evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Protesters holding poster comparing Kep Chuktema, former governor of Phnom Penh, to Duch, the convicted head of the infamous S21 Khmer Rouge interrogation center, when evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Protesters holding poster comparing Kep Chuktema, former governor of Phnom Penh, to Duch, the convicted head of the infamous S21 Khmer Rouge interrogation center, when evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community are prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Members from the Boeung Kak lake community who were prevented by the police from passing in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's residence when trying to reach evicted communities of Phnom Penh demonstrating in front of the National Assembly, feel unwell during a scuffle with security forces.

CAMBODIA, Phnom CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Nuth Rumdoal, opposition CNRP lawmaker, talks to the evicted communities of Phnom Penh who demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.. 7/09/2014: Nuth Rumdoal, opposition CNRP lawmaker, talks to the evicted communities of Phnom Penh who demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

CAMBODIA, Phnom Penh. 8/09/2014: Nuth Rumdoal, opposition CNRP lawmaker, talks to the evicted communities of Phnom Penh who demonstrate in front of the National Assembly.

The Noorderlicht Photofestival ‘An Ocean of Possibilities’ opened its doors on August 31st in Leeuwarden (Netherlands). Some 20 photographs about the Cambodian civil society resisting the erosion of their rights are featured in the ‘Rise’ section.

You can read an interview HERE.

Noorderlicht in Leeuwarden

Noorderlicht in Leeuwarden

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 2/07/2013: Members of the Boeung Kak Lake community, entangled in a land issue since 2007, try to push past a Police blockade preventing them from demonstrating in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's house on Sihanouk Boulevard.

CAMBODIA. Phnom Penh. 2/07/2013: Members of the Boeung Kak Lake community, entangled in a land issue since 2007, try to push past a Police blockade preventing them from demonstrating in front of Prime Minister Hun Sen's house on Sihanouk Boulevard.